Politics – All This Over a Rotting Men’s Room?

For those not up on Boston politics, a Boston politician, Michael P. Ross, for some reason has an enormous erection for the idea of renovating a crumbling old men’s room on Boston Common into some kind of tacky food-selling nightmare. He doesn’t particularly care what KIND of tacky food-selling nightmare, as long as it’s tacky and completely out of place in one of the nation’s oldest green spaces. It is vitally important that this be a worse idea than Boston’s City Hall.

Anyway, some burger chain called Shake Shack apparently would like to move into this superannuated piss-trough, and to the New York Times this is a big deal because the Yankees won the Series and Boston hates New York (which isn’t quite true: Boston hates the Yankees, and a good chunk of Boston residents are actually FROM New York in the first place) and why can’t Boston just accept that New York is better and have a Shake Shack. And now it’s a big pissing match.

While I’m always one to give New Yorkers a pounding for their self-important horseshit, and Shake Shack really is just another burger joint, the truth is, this kind of fast-food provincialism is all over the country. Midwesterners swear Steak ‘N Shake is the greatest burger joint ever, Californians sing the praises of In N’ Out Burger, Southerners will never shut the fuck up about Sonic, etc. Everybody loves the hometown burger joint the best, even though the differences between them are usually subtle at best. I confess to a small soft spot for Steak ‘N Shake, myself, although why, when a Sonic opened in Massachusetts, first day traffic blocked major roads I have no idea.

I will say I’m baffled that the Times is under the impression Boston eats entirely seafood. It’s true the seafood and roast beef joint is a distinctly (and extremely odd) New England phenomenon, but this is a city with no lack of burgers. I personally recommend Flat Patties and Leo’s Diner, both of Harvard Square. Does Shake Shake have almost any soda you can think of in a glass bottle, like Leo’s? No? Then, frankly, Shake Shack can suck it.

Personally, I just don’t see the economic value in Ross’ plan, unless he’s somehow going to magically clean up all the homeless loitering around waiting for their bed at the shelters, or the drug dealers trying to sell them crack. I’ve been on the Common at least once a week for the last five years; remodelling a decrepit bathroom into a fried clam shack isn’t going to begin to address the problems. The only thing I can see it doing is boosting the fatality rate of Boylston and Tremont streets as Emerson students charge across the street to get at mediocre food.

Hey, here’s an idea. Maybe we can turn that destitute sewage depository into an actual homeless shelter! We could solve a problem! Wouldn’t that be amazing?

And probably asking too much of a Boston politician. But there you go.


3 Responses to “Politics – All This Over a Rotting Men’s Room?”

  1. Sam Says:

    Wait, there’s a Sonic in Massachusetts now?

  2. seitzeeing Says:

    Indeed there is. It’s in Peabody, and supposedly up to 14 more are in the works.

  3. Drew Says:

    I’ve been to that Sonic. Decent, but not great. Kind of reminded me of Roy Rogers.

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